2020 Winners and Co-Winners


Congratulations to all who participated in the preliminary round of the 2020 ITA Solo and Ensemble Competitions! Due to the worldwide COVID-19 pandemic and subsequent cancellation of the 2020 ITF, the ITA has made the decision to designate all competition finalists as “Co-Winners.” While we are unable to showcase these outstanding musicians at the ITF, we are happy to utilize this webpage and social media to introduce our membership to the 2020 Co-Winners as well as the winners of the Remington Trombone Choir and Kai Winding Jazz Trombone Ensemble competitions.


Emory Remington Trombone Choir Competition Winner

Photo of NMH Trombone ClassThe NMH Trombone Class (The Norwegian Academy of Music or Norges Musikkhøgskole) are taught by professors Jonus Bylund and Sverre Riise. Members of the winning ensemble are: Jón Arnar Einarsson, Marie Nøkleby Hanssen, Runa Eid Hermansen, Jakob Nilsson, William Raagart, Gabriel Boezi Gjerpe, Mats Hägerlind, Martha Eikemo Andersen, Victor Enander, Karoline Trondsen, Askil Okkenhaug, and Elsa-Marie Fåglefelt.

Listen to the NMH Trombone Class’s winning recording of Anthony Dilorenzo’s Full Tilt.

While this fantastic ensemble was unable to perform their featured recital due to the cancellation of the 2020 ITF, the ITA is thrilled to present them in a live-streamed recital at 20:00, Wednesday, November 4, 2020. (Norwegian time is GMT+2.) Stream the concert here:

https://mediasite.nmh.no/Mediasite/Play/e8b5d79ad48e425aaae37d4472af71a01d?fbclid=IwAR2OMht6c2Zjgw2EaYquEQo2gi5Ph-6HPYzvO3jiYbS4LgduqPQQA6zHKYg


ITA Trombone Quartet Competition Co-Winners

Photo of Bone-afideBone-afide is an emerging chamber ensemble made up of some of the UK’s leading young trombonists. A group of friends all currently studying in London, the group strives to showcase the versatility of the trombone, performing works from all genres and periods with the aim of defying any stereotypes surrounding the instrument.

Alongside being chamber musicians, the members are also keen orchestral musicians. Having appeared with various national youth orchestras and the European Union Youth Orchestra, they are now appearing on the professional circuit, with orchestras including the London Symphony Orchestra, English National Opera, RTE and RTE Concert Orchestra, Bournemouth Symphony Orchestra and Sinfonica de Galicia.

The members of Bone-afide are Chris Brewster, Angus Butt, Isobel Daws, and Merin Rhyd.

Watch Bone-afide perform an excerpt from David Faleris’ City of Arts and Sciences

Photo of NMH Quartet

NMH is short for The Norwegian Academy of Music or Norges Musikkhøgskole. NMH’s Trombone Quartet was informally established in the autumn of 2017 at school. All members are students of Prof. Jonas Bylund and Associate Prof. Sverre Riise at the Norwegian Academy of Music. They all started at the Academy at 2017 and will finish their bachelor’s degrees in 2021. All members are the same age, and practice together often. The quartet regularly receives coaching from Prof. Jonas Bylund and other teachers at NMH.

The members of the NMH Quartet are:

  • Jakob Nilsson, from Sweden, began studying at the Norwegian Academy of Music in 2017 along with the other members. Before that he graduated from Lilla Akademien in Stockholm after studying with Mikael Oscarson, trombonist of the Swedish Radio Symphony Orchestra.
  • William Raagart, from Sweden, graduated from Lilla Akademien in Stockholm also studying for Mikael Oscarson before moving to Norway to study at NMH in 2017.
  • Runa Eid Hermansen, from Norway, graduated from Skien Videregående school with Åsgeir Grong and Øyvind Hage as teachers, before starting her Bachelor at NMH in 2017.
  • Jón Arnar Einarsson, from Iceland, graduated from The Icelandic Musicians Union School of Music after studying with Sigurður Þorbergsson, trombonist of the Icelandic Symphony Orchestra before moving to Norway to study.

Watch the NMH Quartet perform David Faleris’ City of Arts and Sciences

Photo of Quartetto BoonQuartetto Boon is comprised of four students at the Tokyo College of Music in Tokyo, Japan, where they study with Haruki Kishira and Hiroyuki Kurogane. In addition to being named Co-Winners of the ITA Quartet Competition, they were also awarded Second Prize in the 7th Trombone Quartette Competition, and they were awarded First Prize in the Quartet category of the 4th Japan Trombone Competition.

The members of Quartetto Boon are Mizuki Ogura, Miou Sasaki, Kanta Yasuda, and Kentaro Yoshie.

Listen to Quartetto Boon perform David Faleris’ City of Arts and Sciences

 


Gilberto Gagliardi Tenor Trombone Competition Co-Winners

Photo of Nate BerryNate Berry is a trombonist from Salem, Oregon. He will be returning to the Jacobs School of Music at Indiana University this fall to continue his studies towards a Bachelor of Music in Trombone Performance under the instruction of Peter Ellefson. Nate has formerly studied with Carson Keeble, Matt Polacek, and Rick Greenwood.

Nate began playing the trombone in the 5th grade. In High School, Nate competed in the Oregon State Solo Competition where he received top 3 placement his junior and senior years. He also had the wonderful opportunity of performing with the Oregon All-State Ensembles for 2 years, and the All-Northwest Ensembles for 1 year. In his first year at Indiana University, Nate had the honor of performing with the Wind Ensemble, New Music Ensemble, Brass Choir, Trombone Choir, various Ad-Hocs, and Student Composition Recitals.

Nate is also very involved in music education in his hometown. As a former Drum Major, he volunteers across the Willamette Valley. In his spare time, Nate enjoys backpacking in the Oregon wilderness.

Watch Nate perform the first movement of Grondahl’s Concerto

Photo of Lukas HelselLukas Helsel is a student at the New England Conservatory of Music where he studies trombone performance under former Boston Symphony member, Norman Bolter. Having grown up in Pittsburgh, Lukas has worked closely with Mike Dorato and Jim Nova. Throughout high school, he was a part of the Three Rivers Young People’s Orchestra, Pittsburgh Youth Symphony Orchestra, and the River City Youth Brass Band.

At a very early age, Lukas was introduced to “overdubbing” by one of his main mentors, Jim Nova. Ever since this defining moment, “overdubbing” has been a key part of Lukas’s progression as a player. Just recently, Lukas and Jim Nova collaborated on an overdub of Eugene Bozza’s “Trois Pieces” for Trombone Quartet. Overdubbing and music technology have continued to be one of his favorite hobbies. His other hobbies include fishing, hiking, and enjoying the outdoors.

Watch Lukas perform the Courante from Bach’s Cello Suite No.1

Zhitong Zhang is a student at the Central Conservatory of Music Middle School in Beijing, China, where he studies with Liu Yang.


Lewis Van Haney Philharmonic Prize Co-Winners

Photo of Nat HsuNat Hsu is currently a senior at the University of Texas at Austin, where he is studying classical trombone under the direction of Dr. Nathaniel Brickens and double majoring in mechanical engineering. Nat has also been a finalist in the ATW National Soloist Competition (2017) and was named an alternate for the Steven Zellmer Trombone Competition (2019). Additionally, this summer he participated in the Stockholm Chamber Brass Academy with his quintet, Nine Cent Brass.

In his spare time Nat enjoys climbing, playing ultimate frisbee, and anything else that allows him to take advantage of the warm Texas climate.

Photo of Timothy MainesTimothy Jay Maines II is an avid trombone enthusiast. Ever since the age of 12 he knew that it was his destiny to play trombone. He has performed with various ensembles such as the Pacific Music Festival Orchestra, Richmond Symphony, New World Symphony, Chicago Symphony Orchestra, and the Northwestern Symphonic Wind Ensemble. He is currently pursuing a Master’s Degree in Trombone Performance at Northwestern University. Aside from trombone, Tim engages in a variety of activities such as playing video games with friends, swing dancing, studying languages, and exploring the great outdoors.

Watch Timothy perform the first movement of Stephenson’s Sonata for Trombone and Piano

Photo of Jonathan McNeerJonathan McNeer, from Biloxi, Mississippi, is currently a master’s student at Northwestern University studying with Michael Mulcahy, Christopher Davis, Randall Hawes, Timothy Higgins, and Douglas Wright.  Jonathan completed his undergraduate degree at The University of Southern Mississippi with Dr. Ben McIlwain.  He has performed with both the Chicago Symphony Orchestra and Mississippi Symphony Orchestra and has attended the Alessi Seminar, Hot Springs Music Festival, Sewanee Summer Music Festival, and the Southeast Trombone Symposium.  He was accepted into the Music Academy of the West for  Summer 2020 and is participating in the Music Academy Remote Learning Institute.


Donald Yaxley Bass Trombone Competition Co-Winners

Photo of Eden GarzaEden Garza is entering his second year as a Masters student at the University of Texas at Austin, where he studies with Dr. Nathaniel Brickens. He previously received his Bachelor of Music Performance degree from Texas A&M University Kingsville (TAMUK) in spring of 2019, studying with Dr. Oscar Diaz.

Eden was named finalist for the 2015 American Trombone Workshop Division 1 Bass Trombone solo competition, 1st runner up for the 2016 International Trombone Association’s (ITA) George Roberts solo bass trombone competition, semifinalist for the United States Army Pershing’s Own Ceremonial Band, finalist and winner of the 2018 ITA Edward Kleinhammer Orchestral Bass Trombone Competition, and most recently finalist and winner of the Big 12 Bass Trombone Competition.

As a soloist, he has performed at the ITA’s Composers Workshop, with TAMUK’s Jazz Band I, the South Texas Trombone Sound, the TAMUK Trombone Choir, the TAMUK Wind Symphony at the Texas Music Educators Association Conference, and the UT Trombone Choir at Texas Music Educators Association Conference.

Eden holds the bass trombone chair for the Laredo Philharmonic Orchestra and the Temple Symphony Orchestra.

Watch Eden’s entry to the Hungarian Trombone Camp’s Online Trombone Competition

Photo of Gabriel GjerpeGabriel Boezi Gjerpe is a Norwegian trombonist who is currently studying for his master’s degree at the Norwegian Academy of Music with professors Jonas Bylund and Eirik Devold. In 2019 he graduated from the Barratt Due institute of music with Sverre Riise, Terje Midtgård and Clare Farr as teachers. In 2015 he attended one semester at the conservatory of Amsterdam in the class of Pierre Volders, Remko de Jager and Jörgen van Rijen.

In addition to his studies, Gabriel has been an active freelance tenor and bass trombonist all over Norway. In 2019 he won the position of bass trombone in the Staff Band of the Norwegian Armed Forces in Oslo, where he has been employed since August 2019. In 2020 Gabriel was appointed bass trombonist of the Verbier Festival Orchestra, which will take place in the summer of 2021. He was also a part of the Norwegian Academy of Music trombone choir, who was awarded the Remington trombone choir prize at the 2020 ITF.

Watch Gabriel perform the Saraband from J.S. Bach’s Cello Suite No.5

Photo of David SztranyakDávid Sztranyák began his musical studies with István Gmoser in Kiskőrös, and continued it with László Barkóczi and Lóránd Vida in Pécs. He was then admitted to the the University of Szeged, where he studied with professors György Gyivicsán and József Vörös. Finally, he earned a MA degree at the Liszt Academy in Budapest, studying with Professor Gusztáv Hőna. After graduation, Dávid has remained in Budapest, continuing to hone his skills performing in several orchestras, including the Hungarian State Opera, the Budapest Operetta Theatre and the Alba Regia Symphony Orchestra in Székesfehérvár. He also performs as one of the eight members of the SzegEd TRombone ENsemble.

Watch David perform with the SzegEd TRombone ENsemble


Larry Wiehe Tenor Trombone Competition Co-Winners

Photo of Nathaniel Chiu

Nathaniel Chiu is a “post grad” senior tenor trombonist at Western Michigan University. In addition to being named a co-winner in the 2020 International Trombone Association’s Larry Wiehe Solo Competition, in 2019 Nathaniel was named the Honorable Mention selection in the same competition. Prior to entering college, Nathaniel studied trombone with Kalamazoo Symphony Orchestra principal trombonist Kip Hickman for eight years. He is a two-time Michigan All-State member, performing with the all-state band his junior year and the all-state orchestra his senior year. He was also chosen twice for the Michigan Youth Arts Festival Orchestra, sitting as principal trombone his senior year. During the summer of 2018, Nathaniel joined the Kalamazoo Junior Symphony Orchestra as a guest trombonist on a tour of South Africa. In both the summers of 2018 and 2019, he attended the Bay View Summer Festival, where he studied from WMU trombone graduate and Youngstown State University trombone professor Dr. Andrew Mitchell (BM ’07).

Watch Nathaniel perform Pryor’s “Fantastic Polka”

Photo of Guangwei Fan

Guangwei Fan is a native of Guangzhou, China. He studied with Mr. Zheng Guo, the former principal trombonist of the Guangzhou Symphony Orchestra before he went to college. Mr. Fan completed his bachelor’s degree at the Curtis Institute of Music, where he studied with Mr. Nitzan Haroz and Mr. Matthew Vaughn, the principal and co-principal trombonists of the Philadelphia Orchestra. He is currently a member of the New World Symphony.

During his summers, Mr. Fan has performed in the International Trombone Festival, Pacific Music Festival, National Repertory Orchestra, Spoleto Festival, National Orchestral Institute and Aspen Music Festival. As a soloist, he won the 2014 SliderAsia Asian Tenor Trombone Solo Competition, was named the 2nd runner-up for the 2015 SliderAsia International Tenor Trombone Solo Competition and selected as a finalist of the Gilberto Gagliardi Tenor Trombone Competition at the 2016 International Trombone Festival. In 2020, he was selected as the co-winner of the Larry Wiehe Tenor Trombone Competition at the 2020 International Trombone Festival. Outside of trombone, Mr. Fan is an amateur street dancer and a fitness enthusiast.

Watch Guangwei perform Arban’s “Fantaisie Brilliante”

Photo of Polina TarasenkoPolina Tarasenko was born in 2001 in Kherson, Ukraine. She began her musical life at the age of 5 in the usual music jazz section for children of the Kherson Palace of Pioneers with her first teacher Semyon Ryvkin. Her first music instrument was drum set. Then she started to play saxophone, trumpet, trombone and piano. She graduated from Kherson music school №3 in 2013 (classical music). Polina was invited to study (2013-2018) at the Moscow Secondary Special Music School named Gnesin with the main specialty trombone and 5 electives – piano, saxophone, trumpet, organ, composition. Her trombone teacher was Alexander Nyankin. After graduating from Gnesin school with honors in 2018, she has studied classical trombone performance at Hochschule für Musik, Theater und Medien Hannover in the class of the professor Jonas Bylund.

She became a winner and participant of such competitions and festivals as “Iguazu and concerto”,  “Moscow meets friends”, “Gnessin Jazz” (1st prize), “Riga jazz stage” (3rd prize), Positively Brass and percussion competition Trossingen (1st prize), International trombone Competition in Detmold (3rd prize), International trombone competition Alsace (1st prize and audience prize), International trombone Festival 2019 Gilberto Gagliardi competition (1st prize), International trombone competition “Citta di Porcia” (3rd prize and audience prize). She is a scholarship holder of the Presidential Foundation “Ukraine” Leonid Kuchma, Vladimir Spivakov International Charitable Foundation, Marous Foundation, “Yehudi Menuhin Live Music Now Hannover e.V.”, Yamaha scholarship, and the Gundlach Scholarship.

Watch Polina perform Brian Lynn’s Doolallynastics


JJ Johnson Jazz Trombone Competition Co-Winners

 

Photo of Joe Giordano
Photo credit: Bailey Cummings

Originally from Albany, NY, Joe Giordano is a trombonist, composer, and bandleader based in New York City. He currently studies at the Manhattan School of Music under the tutelage of Marshall Gilkes and Marc Cary. Giordano was inspired by his father, Mark, a trombonist and educator in his own right who introduced Giordano to jazz as he first picked up the trombone. As he continued to grow, Giordano became enamored with the sounds of JJ Johnson and Curtis Fuller. His list of heroes and influences has expanded to include literary geniuses such as William Blake, Carl Jung, and Ta-Nehisi Coates.

Since moving to New York City, Giordano has performed with many key voices on the scene, including Frank Lacy, Bobby Sanabria, Stacy Dillard, and Davis Whitfield Jr. He has performed at venues such as Smalls, Dizzy’s, Clement’s Place, Newport Jazz Festival, and with the Jazz Exchange. In addition to being a Vail Jazz Alumnus, Giordano was named a YoungArts Finalist in Jazz in 2018.

Giordano is fortunate to be in collaboration with exciting up-and-coming musicians in both Beehive Quartet and his own band, the120__. Beehive Quartet’s first record is currently being mixed for release, while Giordano has plans to record his first album of original music in the coming year. He intends to further establish the trombone as an integral part of the scene and deliver a healing message through the lens of creative music.

Listen to Joe perform his original composition “A Pillow’s Vortex”

Photo of Dave MoskoDave Mosko is a Trombonist, Composer/Arranger and Educator currently studying at the Mason Gross School of the Arts at Rutgers University under the direction of Conrad Herwig. He is currently a 4th year Undergraduate Student studying Music Performance with a focus in Jazz Studies, performing around the NJ/NYC area and internationally. He has studied under notable jazz figures such as Slide Hampton, Marshall Gilkes, Ed Neumeister and Conrad Herwig. He has performed with artists such as, Abraham Burton, Jaleel Shaw, Larry McKenna, Josh Lawrence and more.

In 2019, Dave was named the winner of the American Trombone Workshop competition and the International Trombone Association’s Carl Fontana Soloist Competition. He was also awarded a Downbeat Award for Outstanding Undergraduate Performance, and was selected as one of 11 musicians from around the U.S.A. as a Yamaha Young Performing Artist. This summer, Dave will join 20 other musicians in Aspen, Colorado for the JAS Workshop with Christian McBride.  Originally from the Philadelphia area, Dave continues to perform and compose new music in an effort to help bring our community together and broaden support for live music.

Watch Dave perform the JJ Johnson composition “Pinnacles”

Photo of DJ RiceBorn in Dallas and raised in Rowlett, Texas, DJ Rice began playing trombone at 11 years old. As a youth he worked with many successful jazz musicians from the University of North Texas, where he later studied as an undergraduate with Carl Lundgren, Tony Baker, and Nick Finzer. While at UNT, DJ played in the seven-time Grammy nominated One O’Clock Lab Band, in which he held the jazz trombone chair from Fall 2017 to Spring 2019. He is featured on the band’s albums Lab 2018: The Rhythm of the Road and Lab 2019, the latter of which included two of his original compositions. He also played in the UNT Jazz Trombone Ensemble, The U-Tubes, winners of the American Trombone Workshop Jazz Ensemble Competition in 2016 and 2019.

During his time at UNT, DJ played jazz trombone and euphonium in the 2018 Disney All American College Band and was a finalist for the Navy Commodores Jazz Trombone position.

DJ currently attends Michigan State University (MSU) where he studies jazz trombone with Michael Dease. Coming in as a Graduate Assistant, his responsibilities included teaching lessons, writing music, serving as the assistant director for Jazz Orchestra 2, and serving as the assistant director for Jazz Octet 3. Going into his second year as a graduate assistant, DJ is looking ahead to the future. His primary goals right now are to record an album for his small group and an album for his big band, the DJ Rice Big Band.

Watch DJ perform his original composition “Unlocked”


Frank Smith Tenor Trombone Competition Co-Winners

Photo of Mustafa Khalilov

Mustafa Khalilov was born in 1996 in Baku, Azerbaijan, where he began playing the trombone at the age of 14. After graduating from the Baku Musical Academy, he studied at Haute Ecole de Musique de Lausanne (Master of Arts in Music Performance), where he studied with Professor Jacques Mauger, whom Mustafa credits with having a tremendous impact on both his life and creative development as a musician and performer.

Currently, Mustafa is studying at the Conservatoire à rayonnement régional de Paris. He has also participated in various workshops with Igor Yakovlev, Uwe Fussel, Fritz Winter, Alexander Erbrich-Crawford, Dan Jenkins,  Andrew Cresci, Erkin Yusubov, Fabrice Milischer, and Christopher Holding.

Watch Mustafa perform the first movement of Stephenson’s Sonata for Trombone and Piano

Photo of Timothy Maines

Timothy Jay Maines II is an avid trombone enthusiast. Ever since the age of 12 he knew that it was his destiny to play trombone. He has performed with various ensembles such as the Pacific Music Festival Orchestra, Richmond Symphony, New World Symphony, Chicago Symphony Orchestra, and the Northwestern Symphonic Wind Ensemble. He is currently pursuing a Master’s Degree in Trombone Performance at Northwestern University. Aside from trombone, Tim engages in a variety of activities such as playing video games with friends, swing dancing, studying languages, and exploring the great outdoors.

Watch Timothy perform the first movement of Stephenson’s Sonata for Trombone and Piano

Jamey Morgan is a freelance musician and music educator hailing from Boulder, Colorado. Raised in a musical family, he was constantly exposed to a wide variety of choral and vocal music, interests which continue to inform his musicianship to this day. Jamey developed a deep love for performing in high school through marching, concert, and jazz bands, and decided to pursue a career in music. While studying with Dr. William Stanley at the University of Colorado, he spent his summers as a member of the Blue Knights Drum and Bugle Corps where he performed on baritone, euphonium, and trombone. Jamey then had the short but life-changing opportunity to study with Mark Lusk at Penn State University for one year, earning a Professional Performance Certificate. He is now living in Michigan, where he is a doctoral candidate at Michigan State University, where he also previously completed his Master of Music degree. Studying with Ava Ordman, he also serves as the trombone studio’s graduate teaching assistant.

A versatile musician, Jamey is an active freelance performer on alto, tenor, and bass trombones, performing in several chamber ensembles and orchestras in Michigan. Jamey has been a participant at the Cleveland Trombone Seminar (2017 and 2018), the Third Coast Trombone Retreat (2018), and the Round Top Festival Institute (2019).

Watch Jamey perform the first movement of Stephenson’s Sonata for Trombone and Piano


Edward Kleinhammer Orchestral Bass Trombone Competition Co-Winners

Photo of Brian Entwistle

Appearing on soundtracks for Lost in Space, Destiny 2, and Call of Duty, Brian Entwistle is a freelance bass trombonist and student in Chicago, Illinois. His experiences and skills extend all across the musical world, including solo performance, orchestral performances, jazz and commercial playing, and teaching.

As a freelancer, Brian has been a frequent recording artist with Nashville Music Scoring at the Ocean Way studio. He has recorded music for several video game and movie scores, as well as studio albums; other notable credits include Star Wars: Jedi Fallen Order (2019), Mass Effect: Andromeda (2017), and Evanescence’s studio album, Synthesis (2018). As a jazz artist, he has performed with the Nashville Jazz Orchestra, the Tennessee Jazz Collective, the Nashville Jazz Composer’s Collective, Tim Rushlow and his Big Band, and the Ryan Middagh Jazz Orchestra.

Brian has been a sub with various orchestras in the Southeast United States. He has performed with the Nashville Symphony Orchestra, the Huntsville Symphony Orchestra, the Louisville Orchestra, and the New World Symphony, under the baton of Michael Tilson Thomas. He has also performed with the National Repertory Orchestra of Colorado. Brian is a Chicago Civic Orchestra Associate for the 2020-21 season.

As a soloist, Brian has been a finalist for several competitions, including the American Trombone Workshop National Solo Competition, the International Trombone Association’s George Roberts Competition, the ITA’s Donald Yaxley Competition, and the ITA’s Ed Kleinhammer Excerpt Competition. He has also appeared as a guest soloist with the University of Oklahoma Trombone Choir.

He holds a degree from Vanderbilt University (BM 2016). His primary teachers have been Charlie Vernon, Mark Fisher, Jeremy Wilson, and Gerald Felker. Brian is currently pursuing a Master’s degree at DePaul University in Chicago, Illinois, where he resides with his wife, Lydia, and their dog, Mango.

Photo of Alex MullinsAlex Mullins is originally from St. Louis, Missouri. He is currently pursuing a BM in Music Education at the University of North Texas, where he studies with Tony Baker. By age 14, Mullins began his orchestral studies outside of public school at the Webster University Community Music School. Mullins is also a proud alumni of the St. Louis Youth Symphony Orchestra (SLYSO).

Mullins was recently selected as a finalist in the 2020 American Trombone Workshop National Solo Competition, a performer for the 2020 Pokorny Low Brass Seminar, and a performer for the 2020 Chautauqua Institute. Outside of Orchestral playing, Mullins has also had several opportunities within the Jazz community. Mullins was a member of the 2018 Two O’Clock Lab Band, 2015 All National Honor Band, Jazz U St. Louis All Stars and is an alum of the Summer Jazz Academy hosted by Wynton Marsalis. Although Mullins has studied under a large variety of notable trombonists over the years, his primary teachers are: Tony Baker, Matthew Frederickson, and Gerry Pagano. Outside of Trombone, Alex enjoys reading, running, and spending time with friends and family!

Hear Alex perform the cadenza from Lebedev’s Concerto No.1Photo of David Sztranyak

Dávid Sztranyák began his musical studies with István Gmoser in Kiskőrös, and continued it with László Barkóczi and Lóránd Vida in Pécs. He was then admitted to the the University of Szeged, where he studied with professors György Gyivicsán and József Vörös. Finally, he earned a MA degree at the Liszt Academy in Budapest, studying with Professor Gusztáv Hőna. After graduation, Dávid has remained in Budapest, continuing to hone his skills performing in several orchestras, including the Hungarian State Opera, the Budapest Operetta Theatre and the Alba Regia Symphony Orchestra in Székesfehérvár. He also performs as one of the eight members of the SzegEd TRombone ENsemble.

Watch David perform Bourgeois’ Concerto for Bass Trombone


ITA Alto Trombone Competition Co-Winners

 

Photo of Andras BogacsAndrás Bogács was born in Budapest in 1994 and began his musical studies at the age of 10. He studied at the Béla Bartók Conservatory in Budapest in the Antal Avar class, graduating with honors. He is currently a student of Jonas Bylund at the College of Music, Theater and Media Hannover, where he is pursuing a master’s degree.

András has participated in several master classes from internationally renowned music teachers. During this past year, he has worked as deputy solo trombonist in the Hamburg Symphony Orchestra and played in renowned ensembles such as the Trombone Unit Hannover, World Brass and the New European Ensemble in The Hague.

Photo of Jamey MorganJamey Morgan is a freelance musician and music educator hailing from Boulder, Colorado. Raised in a musical family, he was constantly exposed to a wide variety of choral and vocal music, interests which continue to inform his musicianship to this day. Jamey developed a deep love for performing in high school through marching, concert, and jazz bands, and decided to pursue a career in music. While studying with Dr. William Stanley at the University of Colorado, he spent his summers as a member of the Blue Knights Drum and Bugle Corps where he performed on baritone, euphonium, and trombone. Jamey then had the short but life-changing opportunity to study with Mark Lusk at Penn State University for one year, earning a Professional Performance Certificate. He is now living in Michigan, where he is a doctoral candidate at Michigan State University, where he also previously completed his Master of Music degree. Studying with Ava Ordman, he also serves as the trombone studio’s graduate teaching assistant.

A versatile musician, Jamey is an active freelance performer on alto, tenor, and bass trombones, performing in several chamber ensembles and orchestras in Michigan. Jamey has been a participant at the Cleveland Trombone Seminar (2017 and 2018), the Third Coast Trombone Retreat (2018), and the Round Top Festival Institute (2019).

Watch Jamey perform the first movement of the Albrechtsberger Concerto

Photo of Martin SimonThe playing of German trombonist Martin Simon has been described as “the total package performance” with “excellence in every area” and Christian Lindberg himself predicted him as having “a bright future.” Currently he studies with Dany Bonvin at the Mozarteum University Salzburg as a postgraduate student, having completed his “Master of Music” with distinction last year. This season he also plans on performing special concerts with the 10-piece brass ensemble “Brasssonanz” throughout Germany. In 2020 he reached the final of the ITA Alto Trombone Competition for the second year in a row.

Martin has performed as a guest trombonist with orchestras such as the Munich Philharmonic, Prinsens Musikkorps Denmark, and Bergische Symphoniker, and he has played concerts throughout Europe, China and in the United States of America. For his Bachelor studies his major influences included Chris Houlding, Gerald Klaunzer and Niels-Ole Bo Johansen. In 2012 he received the Cultural Prize of his hometown and the Mozarteum University Salzburg awarded him a scholarship for high achievement in 2018.

In his free time, Martin is a big sports fan and likes to run, play soccer and he roots passionately for the greatest soccer team on earth, FC Bayern Munich.

Watch Martin perform the first movement of the Albrechtsberger Concerto


Carl Fontana Jazz Trombone Competition Co-Winners

 

Jered Byford is the trombone player in the University of Miami Stamps Jazz Quintet directed by Charles Bergeron. Hailing from the music scene of the Pacific Northwest, Jered began his early musicianship attending jazz camps such as the Central Washington University jazz camp and Centrum Port Townsend, taking private lessons, and attending masterclasses from jazz greats such as Bill Anthony, Jiggs Whigham, Wycliffe Gordon, and Chris Stover.

Interested in both studio engineering and composition, Jered is currently pursuing a career in Jazz and Studio Performance, and performing with prestigious groups such as the Stamps Jazz Quintet and the University of Miami Concert Jazz Band. During his time with these groups, he has had the privilege to work with and play with Maria Schneider, Greg Bisonette, Bryan Lynch, Dante Luciani, Dafnis Prieto, Ingrid Jensen, and more. In his free time, he enjoys listening to different styles of music, composing new works, and engineering studio sessions for his friends.

Listen to Jered perform his original composition “Waltz No.7”

Photo credit: Bailey Cummings

Originally from Albany, NY, Joe Giordano is a trombonist, composer, and bandleader based in New York City. He currently studies at the Manhattan School of Music under the tutelage of Marshall Gilkes and Marc Cary. Giordano was inspired by his father, Mark, a trombonist and educator in his own right who introduced Giordano to jazz as he first picked up the trombone. As he continued to grow, Giordano became enamored with the sounds of JJ Johnson and Curtis Fuller. His list of heroes and influences has expanded to include literary geniuses such as William Blake, Carl Jung, and Ta-Nehisi Coates.

Since moving to New York City, Giordano has performed with many key voices on the scene, including Frank Lacy, Bobby Sanabria, Stacy Dillard, and Davis Whitfield Jr. He has performed at venues such as Smalls, Dizzy’s, Clement’s Place, Newport Jazz Festival, and with the Jazz Exchange. In addition to being a Vail Jazz Alumnus, Giordano was named a YoungArts Finalist in Jazz in 2018.

Giordano is fortunate to be in collaboration with exciting up-and-coming musicians in both Beehive Quartet and his own band, the120__. Beehive Quartet’s first record is currently being mixed for release, while Giordano has plans to record his first album of original music in the coming year. He intends to further establish the trombone as an integral part of the scene and deliver a healing message through the lens of creative music.

Listen to Joe play his original composition “A Pillow’s Vortex”

Jack Kotze - PhotoTrombonist Jack Kotze has been living and freelancing in New York City since 2016 when he moved there to study at the Manhattan School of Music. Since then he has performed and recorded in numerous big bands, jazz combos, funk/soul bands, theater pits, chamber ensembles, and symphony orchestras. Jack is in the process of writing new original music and developing his own musical projects. His composition style mixes influences of jazz, funk, R&B, and classical genres. Born in Chicago, he began piano studies at age 7, and at 10 took up the trombone. In 2014, Jack was awarded the Kiewat-Wang Mentorship Award from the Jazz Institute of Chicago which gave him the opportunity to study with highly acclaimed trombonist and arranger Tom Garling.

Some of Jack’s recent accomplishments include attending Betty Carter’s Jazz Ahead program at the Kennedy Center in 2018, being named a YoungArts jazz finalist in 2017, and performing in the Monterey Jazz Festival’s Next Generation Jazz Orchestra and the Grammy Band in 2016. In addition to these accomplishments, he was also named a finalist in the International Trombone Association’s Carl Fontana jazz solo competition in 2019 and a co-winner in 2020. Jack recently graduated this past May from the Manhattan School of Music and will be returning in the fall to pursue a graduate degree. He has been fortunate to study with Marshall Gilkes, Luis Bonilla, David Taylor, and Ingrid Jensen during his time there. Besides music, Jack also enjoys running, biking, movies, video games, and cooking!

Watch Jack solo over “I Hear a Rhapsody”


George Roberts Bass Trombone Competition Co-Winners

 

Ivan Cheung PhotoIvan Cheung is from Hong Kong and is currently pursuing a Bachelor of Music degree in bass trombone performance at The Hong Kong Academy for Performing Arts, where he studies with Zachary Bond. He has also attended masterclasses with world known trombonists such as Joseph Alessi, Sam Armstrong, Marques Young, and Jörgen van Rijen. He is an active performer in Hong Kong and has performed with the SAR Philharmonic Orchestra, Pan Asia Symphony Orchestra, and Pro Arte Orchestra of Hong Kong. Ivan has also collaborated with renowned artists such as Jörgen van Rijen, Steven Mead, Nabil Shehata, Jahja Ling, and the horn quartet German Hornsound.

In addition to his music career, Ivan has also developed an interest in hand drip coffee. He believes that mastering the process of brewing a nice cup of coffee is similar to playing the trombone, as both require nuance, consistency, and patience.

Joao Cunha photoJoão Pedro Guedes da Cunha, born in 1999 in Sousela, Portugal, started his musical studies at the Conservatório do Vale do Sousa, in the class of Prof. António Leal. In 2014, he joined ARTAVE – Escola Profissional Artística do Vale do Ave, in the class of Prof. David Silva. Currently, he is pursuing a bachelor’s degree at ZHdK – Zürcher Hochschule der Kunste, in the class of Prof. David Bruchez.

In addition to the George Roberts competition, he has won the 1st Prize in the “Terras de La Salette” Wind Instruments International Competition (Junior category,) and he has also twice won the 2nd Prize in the International Trombone Competition Castelo de Paiva, in category V. Professionally, he has performed with l ́Orchestre de la Suisse Romande, Orquestra de Guimarães, Kammerphilharmonie Graubunden and City Light Concert Orchestra. During free time, loves to watch movies, listen to music and cook.

Watch João Perform Lebedev’s Concert Allegro

Pelle van Esch photoPelle van Esch is from the city of Gouda in the Netherlands. As a ten-year-old, Pelle shined at Amsterdam’s Concertgebouw with his own composition, “Strange Birds”, in the New Year’s Concert of the Netherlands Wind Ensemble. Three years later he repeated this feat with “Orphan.” In 2017 his work “1967” was awarded the second prize at the prestigious Prinses Christina Concours for composers. Among others he has composed for Joseph Alessi and Tania Kross. He recently composed a concertino for bass trombone, “Homage to Gershwin,” that he performed with the Hague Philharmonic Orchestra.

As a performing artist on bass trombone Pelle is even more successful than as a composer. He has won prizes in several (Inter)national competitions. At the Alessi Seminar Italy 2018 he outshone nine highly qualified, professional bass trombonists (some were twice his age) at a mock audition.

Pelle was taught by his mother Ingrid, Pete Saunders and Sebastiaan Kemner. Besides bass trombone he also plays tuba, tenor trombone and euphonium. Currently he studies at the Royal Conservatory in The Hague with Reza Namavar (composition) and Ben van Dijk and Brandt Attema (bass trombone). In the past years he followed masterclasses with Joseph Alessi, Ian Bousfield, George Curran and Stefan Schultz.

Pelle is an active member of the Dutch Youth Orchestra and Young Trombone Collective. He is very much in demand as a soloist and he likes to surprise audiences with both the power and the subtlety of the bass trombone. He is supported by the Foundation Classic Young Masters, which actively supports his development as a composer and performing artist.

Watch Pelle perform Daniel Schnyder’s SubZero


Robert Marsteller Tenor Trombone Competition Co-Winners

 

Jonathan Salcedo is a student at Vanderbilt University where he has been studying Trombone Performance with Jeremy Wilson, Associate Professor of Trombone and Nick Laufer, Adjunct Professor of trombone. His other principal teachers include Dr. Bradley Edwards, Steve McAllister, Leslie Pozo, and Shea Marshall, with whom he studied piano and harmony.  He has also taken lessons with the world-renowned jazz trombonist Bob McChesney.

Recently he won Division 1 of the 2020 American Trombone Workshop Solo Competition. An avid fan of jazz and contemporary musical styles, Jonathan has performed with such acts like the Nashville Symphony Orchestra, Willie Gonzalez, and the New Guard Big Band. In his spare time, he finds himself playing piano, composing, and experimenting in the kitchen!

Watch Jonathan perform Serge Baudo’s Petite Suite

Polina Tarasenko photoPolina Tarasenko was born in 2001 in Kherson, Ukraine. She began her musical life at the age of 5 in the usual music jazz section for children of the Kherson Palace of Pioneers with her first teacher Semyon Ryvkin. Her first music instrument was drum set. Then she started to play saxophone, trumpet, trombone and piano. She graduated from Kherson music school №3 in 2013 (classical music). Polina was invited to study (2013-2018) at the Moscow Secondary Special Music School named Gnesin with the main specialty trombone and 5 electives – piano, saxophone, trumpet, organ, composition. Her trombone teacher was Alexander Nyankin. After graduating from Gnesin school with honors in 2018, she has studied classical trombone performance at Hochschule für Musik, Theater und Medien Hannover in the class of the professor Jonas Bylund.

She became a winner and participant of such competitions and festivals as “Iguazu and concerto”,  “Moscow meets friends”, “Gnessin Jazz” (1st prize), “Riga jazz stage” (3rd prize), Positively Brass and percussion competition Trossingen (1st prize), International trombone Competition in Detmold (3rd prize), International trombone competition Alsace (1st prize and audience prize), International trombone Festival 2019 Gilberto Gagliardi competition (1st prize), International trombone competition “Citta di Porcia” (3rd prize and audience prize). She is a scholarship holder of the Presidential Foundation “Ukraine” Leonid Kuchma, Vladimir Spivakov International Charitable Foundation, Marous Foundation, “Yehudi Menuhin Live Music Now Hannover e.V.”, Yamaha scholarship, and the Gundlach Scholarship.

Watch Polina perform Brian Lynn’s Doolallynastics

Born in Castelo de Paiva, Portugal, João Miguel Rodrigues Teixeira, began his musical studies at the Academia de Musica de Castelo de Paiva at the age of 10. Two years later, he continued his studies with his teacher David Silva at the Escola Profissional Artistica do Vale do Ave. Since  September 2018, he has studied in the Bachelor Programme at Zürcher Hochschule der Künste, with professor David Bruchez. He has also worked with teachers such as Martin Schippers, Ian Bousfield, Bill Thomas, Stefan Schluz, Andreas Klein, Jarret Butler, Filipe Alves, Abbie Conant, Jamie Williams, Frederic Belli and Fabrice Millischer.

Prior to his success in the Robert Marsteller competition, he won the 1st prize in the Paços Premium competition (2019), and he won the 2nd Prize in the International Trombone Competition, category III (2016.) In May 2020 he was also selected for the Summer and Season Internship with the Symphony Orchestra Biel Solothurn. He has also performed in ochestras such as the Jungend Sinfonie-Orchester Zürich and Schweizer jungend Sinfonie-Orchester, working with conductors including Benoit Fromanger, Fernando Marinho, Maxime Tortelier, Rafa Albors, André Granjo, and José Eduardo Gomes.

Watch João perform Serge Baudo’s Petite Suite